Contact          FAQ

ITA Training Courses

ITACET Training Course

ITACET Training course

Dates: 12-13 May 2023
Theme: Risk management and sustainable underground solutions
Venue: Athens Chamber of Commerce and Industry – Akadimias 7, Athina 106 71

It is a great pleasure to invite you to WTC2023 Training course which is going to take place from Friday 12 May 2023 to Saturday 13 May 2023.

The course, titled “Risk management and sustainable underground solutions”, will be held in Athens Chamber of Commerce and Industry at Akadimias 7, Athens. Is only a 6-minute walk from Syntagma metro station which you can reach by taking line 3 from Megaron Mousikis station outside the conference venue

Following our congress theme on using the underground space to make a positive impact in the world the ITACET training course theme is two-fold: firstly, it is about risk management and how we can utilise our existing knowledge and tools to reduce uncertainty, manage and quantify the risk aiming at design optimisation and secondly, it is about how underground space and engineering can contribute towards sustainable and resilient solutions. Both sub-themes are crucial in today’s tunnelling practices and cannot be neglected in the design and operation of underground projects. So, register and buckle up for this 2-day journey where acclaimed professionals from industry and academia will share their expertise and knowledge.


ITACET Training course registration form

ITACET Training Course | WTC 2023 | 12-13 May 2023

Risk Management in Tunnelling and Underground Sustainable Solutions

The theme of the 2-day course is chosen to cover two of the most representative challenges underground space believers need to address these days. Risks in tunnelling and underground space constructions often lead to disputes and claims. Hence clear recognition of the uncertainties, fair responsibilities allocation and sound on-site recognition procedures could not be more timely. Sustainability on the other hand, needs to be part of underground space development and be taken into consideration throughout the planning, design, construction and operation stages. Our speakers are underground space engineering experts from around the globe, so you have no choice but to join us in our 2-day ITACET course journey.

Day 1: Risk Management in Tunnelling | Session 1: Risk management principles

09:10 – 09:50 | How to handle risk in Subsurface Engineering
Uni. Prof. Robert Galler, Montanuniversität Leoben, Austria ITACET Committee Chair
09:50 – 10:30 | Geological uncertainty, geotechnical investigations, and observational design within the context of risk management
Uni. Prof. Mark Diederichs, Queen’s University, Canada
10:45 – 11:25 | Main risks associated with deep tunnelling
Gerard Seingre, Civil Engineer, BG Consulting Engineers Ltd.
11:25 – 12:05 | Risks in planning, design, construction of large diameter tunnels
Dr Sotirios Vardakos, Technical Director for Tunnels in HNTB’s National Tunnel Practice

Day 1: Risk Management in Tunnelling | Session 2: Tendering & Implementation during construction

13:30 – 14:10 | Monitoring for avoiding hazard situation during construction
Klaus Rabensteiner, Mining Engineer, Managing Director Geodata Survey & Monitoring
14:10 – 14:50 | Contractual Practices and Geotechnical Baseline Reports
Matthias Neuenschwander Managing Director Neuernschwander Consult Eng., ITA WG3
15:05 – 15:45 | Conventional tunnelling cost assessment and benchmarking
Uni. Prof. Chrysothemis Paraskevopoulou, University of Leeds, UK ITACET Committee Member, General Secretariat GTS
15:45 – 16:25 | Examples of Risk management in mechanized tunnelling
Dr Karin Bäppler, Head of Business Development and Geotechnics & Consulting, Traffic Tunnelling Group, Herrenknecht AG, Germany

ITACET Training Course | WTC 2023 | 12-13 May 2023

Risk Management in Tunnelling and Underground Sustainable Solutions

Day 2: Underground Sustainable Solutions | Session 3: Sustainability Issues

09:10 – 09:50 | Introduction to Sustainability Issues in Tunnelling – A look underground in delivering a sustainable future for our people and planet
Prof. Arnold Dix, ITA-AITES President, Barrister, Australia
Antonia Cornaro, ITACUS Co-Chair, Urban Planner Amberg Engineering, CH
09:50 – 10:30 | Sustainability issues
in tunnelling
Dr Giovanny Alvarado, Senior Project Delivery Leader for Ground Engineering and Tunnelling, AECOM, Australia

10:45 – 11:25 | Sustainability issues – Digital engineering approach in tunnelling construction

Max Labecki, Digital Engineering Manager –  Western Harbour Tunnel, ACCIONA Construction Australia

11:25 – 12:05 | Life cycle assessment and sustainability
Uni. Prof. Panagiotis (Panos) Spyridis, University of Rostock, GermanyITA WG21

Day 2: Underground Sustainable Solutions | Session 4: Implementation during design, construction, and operation

13:30 – 14:10 | Digitalization and numerical methods contributions towards sustainability
Uni. Prof. Mike Mooney, Colorado School of Mines, USA ITACET Committee Member
14:10 – 14:50| Holistic Management of emergencies handling on Road Tunnels: The experience from safety drills
Uni. Prof. Konstantinos Kirytopoulos, NTUA, Greece
15:05 – 15:45 | Example in CO2 reduction in tunnel construction from a material technology point of view
Dr  Wolfgang Aldrian Principle Expert Tunneling and Mining & Head New Business, MBT, Austria
15:45 – 16:25 | Examples of resilient tunnel evacuation
Uni. Prof. Andreas Benardos, NTUA, Greece GTS Committee Member

Day 2: Round Table Discussion | 16:35 – 17:25 | Future of Tunnelling – underground experts from Greece


Uni. Prof. (Em.) Sergios Lambropoulos, NTUA, Greece
President of Hellenic Construction Industry Council (HCIC)

Dr. Ioannis LEFAS
Chief Technical Officer (CTO), AKTOR CONCESSIONS S.A.

Nikos Koronakis,
President & CEO, Omikron Kappa Consulting S.A., Greece

Ilias Michalis
Senior Tunnel Engineer & Consultant, SALFO Associates & AVAX S.A., Greece


*click on mugshot for speakers’ brief bio

At the end of each session, there will be a 10 min slot for Q&A.

On both days, coffee and lunch will be provided during the following timeslots:

Morning Coffee Break: 10:30-10:45

Lunch Break: 12:15-13:30

Afternoon Coffee Break: 14:50-15:05

Detailed Program of Training Course on Risk Management in Tunnelling and Sustainable Underground Solutions Time slot Speakers
12 May 2023 – Risk Management in Tunnelling
Session 1: Risk management principles
Registration 08:30 - 09:00
Opening - Short - Introduction 09:00 - 09:10 Uni. Prof. Chrysothemis Paraskevopoulou
1 How to handle risk in Subsurface Engineering 09:10 - 09:50 Uni. Prof. Robert Galler
2 Geological Uncertainty, geotechnical investigations, and observational design within the context of risk management 09:50 - 10:30 Uni. Prof. Mark Diederichs
Coffee Break 10:30 - 10:45
3 Main risks associated to deep tunnels 10:45 - 11:25 Gerard Seingre
4 Risks in Planning, Design & Construction of Large Diameter Tunnels 11:25 - 12:05 Dr. Sotirios Vardakos
Q&A 12:05 - 12:15
Lunch 12:15 - 13:30
Session 2: Tendering & Implementation during construction
5 Monitoring for avoiding hazard situation during construction 13:30 - 14:10 Klaus Rabensteiner
6 Contractual Practices and Geotechnical Baseline Reports 14:10 - 14:50 Matthias Neuenschwander
Coffee Break 14:50 - 15:05
7 Conventional tunnelling cost assessment and benchmarking 15:05 - 15:45 Uni. Prof. Chrysothemis Paraskevopoulou
8 Examples of Risk management in mechanized tunnelling 15:45 - 16:25 Dr. Karin Bäppler
Q&A 16:25 - 16:35
13 May 2023 – Sustainable Underground Solutions
Session 3: Sustainability issues
9 Introduction to sustainability issues in tunnelling 09:10 - 09:50 Prof. Arnold Dix & Antonia Cornaro
10 Sustainability issues in tunnelling 09:50 - 10:30 Dr. Giovanny Alvarado
Coffee Break 10:30 - 10:45
11 Workshop with ITACUS team 10:45 - 11:25 Uni. Prof. Marilu Melo
12 Life Cycle Assessment and sustainability 11:25 - 12:05 Uni. Prof. Panagiotis (Panos) Spyridis
Q&A 12:05 - 12:15
Lunch 12:15 - 13:30
Session 4: Implementation during design, construction, and operation
13 Digitalization and numerical methods contributions towards sustainability 13:30 - 14:10 Uni. Prof . Mike Mooney
14 Holistic Management of emergencies handling on Road Tunnels: The experience from safety drills 14:10 - 14:50 Uni. Prof. Konstantinos Kirytopoulos
Coffee Break 14:50 - 15:05
15 Example in CO2 reduction in tunnel construction from a material technology point of view 15:05 - 15:45 Dr. Wolfgang Aldrian
16 Examples οf resilient tunnel evacuation 15:45 - 16:25 Uni. Prof. Andreas Benardos
Q&A 16:25 - 16:35
17 Panel Discussion on the Future of Tunnellig (Round Table from Underground Experts from Greece) 16:35 - 17:25 Uni. Prof. Sergios Lampropoulos, Ioannis Lefas, Nick Koronakis, Ilias Michalis
Closing Remarks 17:25 - 17:30

Registration Information

Discounts to ITA YM and Students!

Bookings are on a first come first served basis.

Early fee applies till 5 May, 2023. After that date prices will be increased € 50 per type .

ITACET training course pre-registration will close on 10 May, 2023.

till 5 May, 2023From 6 May to 13 May, 2023
Standard registration200.00 €250.00 €
Young Member registration <35 years old150.00 €200.00 €
Student registration100.00 €150.00 €

Robert Galler, Uni. Professor, Montanuniversität Leoben, Austria

After completing the HTL in civil engineering Robert Galler studied mining and tunneling at Montanuniversität Leoben, specializing in geomechanics, tunnel construction and structural civil engineering. In 1997 he finished his PhD. From 1997 to 2007, Robert Galler worked for GEOCONSULT Consulting Engineers. Selected reference projects, in which Robert Galler worked in a leading position, are the high-speed rail connection from Frankfurt to Cologne for Deutsche Bahn, the tender planning for the Semmering base tunnel and the submission, tender and execution design for some construction lots of the approx. 40km long Unterinntalbahn of ÖBB Infrastruktur AG. From 2004 to 2007, Robert Galler was the project manager of a design consortium consisting of 8 companies for the Brenner Base Tunnel project. Since November 2006, Robert Galler has been Professor for Subsurface Engineering at Montanuniversität Leoben; since 2000 he has been a member of the board of the Austrian Society for Geomechanics, since 2005 he has represented Austria in the ITA – International Tunneling Association. In September 2013, Robert Galler was elected chairman of ITA-CET (International Tunneling Association – Communication, Education and Training) in London, which conducts special training courses in the field of geotechnics and tunneling for engineers worldwide. Since December 2015, Robert Galler has been the department head for ZaB – Zentrum am Berg, a unique underground research and development center as well as training and education center, and since July 2016 he has also been the department head for Mineral Resources Engineering.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Mark Diederichs, Uni. Professor, Queen’s University, Canada


Mark Diederichs began his career with a BASc in Geological Engineering at the University of Toronto. After obtaining his Masters degree in Rock Engineering at UofT, his early work involved the development of geological engineering software to aid in underground mining and tunnelling as well as slope stability. He moved on to a position as field microseismic engineer at Creighton Mine, in support of a Queen’s University R&D initiative,  before taking a rock mechanics research position with the Geomechanics Research Centre in Laurentian University where he worked on establishing guidelines fo ground support design  and pursued research related to rockbursts in deep mining. In addition, he has worked as a mining and tunnelling consultant for many years. After completing his PhD in 2000, he joined Queen’s Geological Science and Geological Engineering in 2001. He specializes in underground rock mechanics issues including damage zone development around tunnels, engineering rock characterization in heterogeneous conditions, support design issues, tunnel excavation challenges in hard brittle rock, soft squeezing ground and, brittle fracture and rockbursting and long term stability of caverns and shafts related to nuclear waste repositories.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Gerard Seingre, Civil Engineer, BG Consulting Engineers Ltd.

Since 2017 he works for BG Consulting Engineers Ltd. He holds several positions such as the expert, project manager, Geotechnical and Underground Infrastructures & Energy Production (IGSE), Lecturer for underground construction technology at EPFL, Treasurer of the International Tunnelling and Underground Space Association ITA-AITES, and Member of Swiss Tunnelling committee. He is experienced in hard rock tunneling (TBM and D+B), high depth tunneling (Rock burst), major projects, shafts, big caverns, injection under high water pressure and natural hazard management in mountainous regions.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Dr Sotirios Vardakos, Technical Director for Tunnels in HNTB’s National Tunnel Practice

Dr Sotirios Vardakos (PE) is a Practice Consultant and Technical Director for Tunnels in HNTB’s National Tunnel Practice. He has a Master’s and Ph.D in Civil – Geotechnical Engineering from Virginia Tech and Bachelor’s and Master’s in Mining Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens – Greece.  He has more than 20 years’ experience in underground design and construction with a strong focus in mechanized tunneling, and rock engineering. He served as Task Lead for various underground engineering projects including the East Side Access and Second Avenue Phase 2 projects in New York and the Amtrak Baltimore Potomac Tunnel Replacement Program. Dr. Vardakos recently served as Principal Investigator and Deputy Project Manager for several Federal Highway Administration research programs including research in the US practice for segmental lining design of large diameter tunnels. He is currently working as geotechnical tunneling lead for a new pedestrian and people mover tunnel for the Austin Bergstrom International Airport in Texas.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Klaus Rabensteiner, Mining Engineer, Managing Director Geodata Survey & Monitoring

Klaus Rabensteiner graduated in Mining Engineering from the Montan University Leoben, Austria. He is co-founder and managing director of Geodata Survey & Monitoring Group since 1987. Klaus is well experienced in all aspects of geotechnical instrumentation and monitoring as well as integrated data management during and after construction of tunnels and metros.

Based on its international experience, Geodata develops solutions generating valuable information and insights to ensure safety and efficiency of infrastructure and mining projects. The group has completed over 500 projects successfully worldwide and is at the moment involved in different underground and infrastructure projects like HEPP Alto Maipo (Chile), Metro Sydney (Australia), 32 km long highspeed railway Koralmtunnel in Austria and many more.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Matthias Neuenschwander, Managing Director Neuernschwander Consult Eng

Matthias Neuenschwander is the current animateur of ITA Working Group 3 – Contractual practices. He holds a MSc in civil engineering from ETH Zurich, Switzerland, and is the Managing Director of Neuenschwander Consulting Engineers Ltd ( Matthias has 35 years experience in underground works as a contractor, designer, supervisor, advisor, expert witness, mediator, adjudicator and arbitrator. He chaired the joint FIDIC-ITA task group 10 entrustes with the publication of the Emerald Book until its presentation in 2019.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Chrysothemis Paraskevopoulou, University Professor, University of Leeds, UK

Chrysothemis is a Mining Engineer (MEng) with post-graduate studies (MSc) in Tunnelling & Geological Engineering from NTUA (GR). In 2016, she completed her PhD in tunnelling, which involved working on a joint Research Project between Queen’s University and ETH Zurich. In 2017 she was appointed Assistant Professor at the University of Leeds (UK) to teach rock mechanics, tunnelling and geotechnical-related courses, where in 2019 she got her tenure (permanent chair). She has also been appointed as visiting Lecturer at Warwick University in the UK and Adjunct Professor at Queen’s University in Canada. Her research deals with geo-engineering innovative design for resilient and sustainable geo-structures and their societal impact. She has published more than 50 papers in international journals and conferences. She also works as a Consultant and in the past as a Geotechnical/Tunnel Engineer. In September 2022 Chrysothemis became the Director of the prestigious MSc Engineering Geology at the University of Leeds. She is an active British and Greek Tunnelling Society Young Members Group member and is currently the GTS General Secretariat and Chair of GTSym. She is also the past Vice-chair of the Young Member’s Group (Early Careers Young Professionals) of the International Tunnelling Association (ITA-IATES) and a member of the ITACUS and ITA-CET committees. In 2020 she completed her MBA at Leeds University Business School as she strongly believes in life-long training (and other reasons);  you can tell from her job title. 

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Dr Karin Bäppler, Head of Business Development and Geotechnics & Consulting, Traffic Tunnelling Group, Herrenknecht AG, Germany

Karin graduated as a civil engineer from Technical University of Karlsruhe, Germany (today KIT, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology) and completed post graduate studies with her PhD at the Colorado School of Mines, USA. She joined Herrenknecht in 1997 and since then has specialized in geotechnology, research and development. Since 2008 Karin has managed the Geotechnical and Consulting department for the Traffic Tunnelling Division at Herrenknecht’s head office in Schwanau, Germany and is responsible as Head of Business Development.

She is an invited lecturer for postgraduate degrees at Universities in France, Germany, Italy and the USA on the topic of Tunnelling and Tunnel Boring Machines.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Prof. Arlond Dix, ITA-AITES President, Barrister, Australia

Arnold Dix loves tunnels and the underground space. He is convinced that the underground offers a range of adaptive and resilient solutions to most of the perils facing humanity today. Combining his formal qualifications in Science, Law and Engineering he advocates for all things underground in UN SDG and ESG contexts with a smile on his face and an eye to all matters ethical. He is a disaster and fire life safety subject matter expert as well as having special law, insurance and finance  interests. He happens to be the president  of ITA too. 

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Antonia Cornaro, Urban Planner Amberg Engineering, Lecturer ETHZ, CH

Antonia Cornaro, MA Urban Planning, New York University, has 25 years of working experience as an urban and transport planner from the public and private sector from New York City, London, Vienna, and Zurich, having worked for NYC Department of City Planning, Parsons Brinckerhoff (now WSP), the Austrian Institute of Regional Planning (ÖIR), and the Zurich based multi-disciplinary engineering consulting firm EBP.In her current work as Management team member of Amberg Engineering she focuses on Urban Underground Space with the aim to increase mobility, livability, and resilience of urban areas.This is also central to her work as Co-Chair of ITACUS, the International Tunnel and Underground Space Association’s Committee on Underground Space. Antonia is passionate about cities, global and sustainable development, and has presented and published extensively on this subject. With Han Admiraal she co-authored the book “Underground spaces unveiled: planning and creating the cities of the future”, ICE, 2018 and recipient of the ISOCARP Gerd Albers award on best book. Antonia also teaches at the Federal Institute of Technology, ETH Zurich. The Semester lecture Planning of Underground Space is taught to Master students in architecture, spatial development and civil engineering.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Dr Giovanny Alvarado, Senior Project Delivery Leader  for Ground Engineering and Tunnelling, AECOM, Australia

Giovanny is a senior project delivery leader with over 20 years’ of global experience in design management, project leadership and technical delivery of major underground and tunnelling works. He is a Chartered Civil Engineer, with a MSc in Geotechnical Engineering, and a PhD in Experimental Soil Mechanics from Imperial College London. Giovanny’s major project experience includes infrastructure projects in Australia, the UK, Greece, Saudi Arabia and South America. Giovanny’s strong technical background and major project delivery experience drive high performance multidisciplinary teams with a focus on innovative technical outcomes, sustainability and risk management. Based in Australia since 2011, Giovanny has played a key role in multibillion transportation infrastructure projects such as Sydney Gateway, WestConnex in Sydney, the Rail Infrastructure Alliance for Melbourne Metro, the City Rail Link in Auckland, NEOM in Saudi Arabia and is currently the project manager for the AECOM Aurecon Design Joint Venture delivering the $4.4bn Western Harbour Tunnel Package 2 in Sydney.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Max Labecki - Digital Engineering Manager - Western Harbour Tunnel, ACCIONA Construction Australia

Max Labecki is an accomplished Digital Engineering Manager with a rich experience of 18 years in the AEC (Architectural, Engineering Construction) industry, specializing in BIM (Building Information Modelling) and Digital Engineering. He has played a key role in shaping the industry with his innovative ideas and expertise in emerging technologies. Max has presented at various local and international conferences since 2016, showcasing his deep knowledge and understanding of the Digital Engineering space. Max’s passion for excellence and his drive to deliver innovative solutions have played a crucial role in his team’s performance and project delivery. He has been instrumental in delivering key infrastructure projects in Australia, including the M12 Motorway, MUSBI (Macquarie University Bus Interchange), Inland Rail Project, Humelink – East package, M7 Widening & M7-M12 Interchange, Central West Orana REZ (Renewable Energy Zone) Central New South Wales, and the Suburban Rail Loop in Melbourne. Currently, as the Digital Engineering Manager for Acciona, Max is leading the team towards delivering the $4.4bn Western Harbour Tunnel Package 2 in Sydney, one of the biggest infrastructure projects in Australia.
let popupposts = ['12175'];

Panagiotis (Panos) Spyridis, University Professor, University of Rostock, Germany

Panos Spyridis is the Professor for Concrete Construction, University of Rostock in Germany and partner at Ruler Consult Ltd., London, UK. His professional career includes stations in Greece, Austria, the United Kingdom and Germany. He teaches and researches on the design, construction and sustainable use of concrete structures and infrastructure assets. Prior to this he has served as a technical lead in various tunnel construction and modernisation projects, while in parallel he established Ruler Consult, based in London and serving contractors, insurers, and infrastructure owners/operators with expert advisory on the management of technical risks, and asset life-cycle strategies. His experience includes projects on all continents of the globe, involving motorway, railway, metro, hydropower and pedestrian tunnels, deep shafts and foundations. He serves as the Animateur of the ITA WG 21 “Life Cycle Asset Management” and he is a long-standing member of the International Association of Life Cycle Civil Engineering (IALCCE). He is author to nearly 150 peer-reviewed scientific articles.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Mike Mooney, Uni. Professor, Colorado School of Mines, USA

Mike is the Grewcock Chair Professor of Underground Construction & Tunneling at Colorado School of Mines. He directs the Center for Underground as well as the post-graduate degree program and online graduate certificate in Underground Construction & Tunnel Engineering. Mike teaches courses in tunnel design and construction, support of excavations, and civil infrastructure engineering. His research involves pressure balance TBM tunneling, large diameter liner design, AI and the digital underground, and prediction/control of ground and building deformation. He has authored over 200 peer-reviewed publications. Mike is a member of the ITA Committee on Education and Training, the ISSMGE Committee on Underground Construction in Soft Ground, and the US Underground Construction Association. Mike is a registered Professional Engineer and a consultant on numerous tunneling projects in the US and internationally.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Konstantinos Kyrittopoulos, University Professor, National Technical University of Athens, Greece

Dr Konstantinos Kiryttopoulos is a Professor of Project and Risk Management at the School of Mechanical Engineering, National Technical University of Athens (Greece) and an Adjunct A/Prof. at the University of South Australia. He holds a PhD in Project Risk Management, an Integrated Masters in Mechanical Engineering and he is PMP and AgilePM certified. In the past he worked as an Associate Professor of Project Management at the University of South Australia, Assistant Professor at the Financial and Management Engineering Dept. at the University of the Aegean (Greece) and Teaching Associate at the Hellenic Open University. Apart from the Academia, he has been strongly engaged with the Industry by delivering in-house lectures to middle and senior management staff and providing consulting. At the first steps of his career he had been working as a freelance consultant. He is involved in research and business projects, related to his interests and he is publishing research outcomes in international scientific conferences and journals. For the past 20 years Prof. Kiryttopoulos has been working on road tunnel risk analysis.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Wolfgang Aldrian, Principle Expert Tunneling and Mining & Head New Business, MBT, Austria

Wolfgang Aldrian graduated in Civil Engineering from the Technical University of Graz in Austria and completed post-graduate studies with his PhD at the Mining University of Leoben in Austria. He has a long and successful career in work experience:

With Construction Chemicals since 1998 (MBT, Degussa, BASF, Master Builders), worked as

  • Principle Expert Tunneling and Mining & Head New Business, 2018 – today
  • Technical Head Underground Worldwide, 2009-2018
  • Regional Sales Head Underground (German speaking countries plus EasΤ Europe), 1998-2008

With Design Company Geoconsult (Salzburg/Austria) 1991-1998

  • As Project Manager, Geotechnical Engineer, Senior NATM Engineer (seconded to ABV Rock Group (Saudi) and to Balfour Beatty (London))
  • In various countries: Austria, England, Saudi Arabia, Greece and Malaysia
let popupposts = ['12175'];

Andreas Benardos, Uni. Professor, National Technical University of Athens, Greece

Dr Andreas Benardos is a Professor of Underground Works at the School of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering (SMME) of the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA). He holds a Diploma in Mining Engineering (1996) and a Ph.D. in risk assessment for underground construction projects from NTUA (2002). He has been a faculty member since 2009 and teaches underground mine design as well as design of tunnels and underground works in the underground and postgraduate curricula of SMME and NTUA. He has been appointed as Director of the MSc program of “Design and Construction of Underground Works” at NTUA (2018-2022), while he is also an acting board member of the Greek Tunnelling Society. His research interests are focused on the topics of underground space development and mine design, risk assessment and safety in underground construction, ventilation, feasibility assessment and cost estimation, as well as on applications of artificial neural networks in geo-engineering. He has participated in more than 25 research projects awarded by European, National bodies and private firms and has published more than 80 papers in scientific journals and international conferences.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Sergios Lambroboulos, Uni. Professor (Em.), National Technical University of Athens, Greece & President of Hellenic Construction Industry (HCIC)

Sergios Lambropoulos graduated from the School of Civil Engineering of the National Technical University of Athens / NTUA and the Department of Economics of the University of Athens. He holds an MSc in Management Science from the Imperial College and a doctorate from the NTUA.

He has been Public Works Contractor, Vice President of the Greek Highway Fund, Intra-muros Consultant for Infrastructure and Networks in the European Commission, Technical Advisor of Motorway Concessionaires, General Manager of the Egnatia Odos S.A. for ten years after its establishment and Secretary General for Concessions at the Greek Ministry for Infrastructure, Transport and Networks. He has contributed in various professional and scientific activities.

He was Professor in the Construction Engineering and Management Department of the School of Civil Engineering NTUA. He is currently Professor Emeritus.

He is the President of the Hellenic Construction Industry Council (HCIC).

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Dr. Ioannis LEFAS, Aktor Concessions s.a. – Chief Technical Officer (CTO), Attikes Diadromes s.a. – Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

National Technical University of Athens, Faculty of civil engineering (1982) – Imperial College of Science and Technology, University of London – MSc, in Engineering Seismology and Soil Mechanics (1984) – DIC, Diploma of Imperial College (1984) – PhD in Civil Engineering (1988)
Forty years’ experience in Design and Construction of major projects of heavy civil and multidiscipline engineering. Operations Management of complex medium and major size projects. Business Development, Project and Area Management including contractual and financing issues. Development and Management of major schemes in Greece, Cyprus and Balkans including major Proposals Management. Management of FIDIC contracts and PFI/PPP schemes.
Recently, Chief Executive Officer of O&M companies for infrastructure projects (road, rail, metro).
Author & co-author of more than forty papers on the non-linear behaviour of structures and structural elements, earthquake reconnaissance missions and earthquake resistant analysis and design, innovative analytical & programming techniques, design and construction methodologies of major multidiscipline projects, contractual issues in major infrastructure projects.
let popupposts = ['12175'];

Nikos Koronakis, President & CEO, Omikron Kappa Consulting S.A., Greece

Nikos Koronakis is the President & CEO of OMIKRON KAPPA CONSULTING S.A. and a Geotechnical & Mining Engineer with over 3 decades of extensive experience in large scale infrastructure, engineering and tunnelling projects requiring overall management, coordination and expertise skills. He has a successful leadership track record with extensive experience and professional knowledge on all types of projects life cycle, from inception to construction and turnkey. Has participated and operated in full spectrum in various international projects in the UAE, Qatar, India, Germany, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Romania, Cyprus, Serbia-Montenegro, Venezuela, Albania, Russia, USA as well as in all major concessions in Greece. Since 1996 has been involved as an Expert Tunnel Consultant and Project Leader in the provision of design and consulting services for more than one hundred (100) tunnel and mining projects with a cumulative length of over 500 km and has managed more than one hundred (100) contracts as an Expert Tunnelling Consultant for Ministries of Public Works and Private Contractors. The diversity of accumulated project involvements brings a wealth of technical expertise and practical experience to project standstills. A dynamic, result-oriented, committed and innovative executive manager and a well-recognized tunnelling – geotechnical expert with numerous publications in the relevant sector.

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Ilias Michalis, Senior Tunnel Engineer & Consultant, SALFO Associates & AVAX S.A., Greece

Michalis’ 29 year professional career in managing, consulting and designing major infrastructure projects is the combination of:

  •  His successful involvement in the tunneling and geotechnical designs of significant infrastructure projects in Greece and overseas (DTTS Phase 2 in Singapore, Doha Metro, Dubai Metro, Athens Metro, Egnatia Highway Project, Patras – Athens – Thessaloniki Highway Project etc.),
  •  His involvement in the Independent Engineer’s teams for major Highway Concession Projects in Greece (i.e. MOREAS Concession Highway Project, AEGEAN Motorways Concession Highway Project, OLYMPIA ODOS Concession Project), and
  •  His numerous scientific and academic activities in the areas of Tunneling, Geotechnical Engineering and Complex Foundation Engineering.

Michalis experience in tunnelling engineering, includes, among others: (i) the design of different types of tunnels (railway, motorway and hydraulic tunnels), (ii) the risk analyses of various methodologies of underground operations (TBM and NATM) for metros, railway, motorway and hydraulic projects, and (iii) the active membership in working groups for drafting tunnel and geotechnical design and construction specifications. Finally, it is to be emphasized: (i) Michalis participation in the Technical Consulting Group for the initial design and construction phase of Athens Metro Project, (ii) Michalis’ 5-year cooperation with the Hellenic (Greek) Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport & Networks (2006 – 2011), as Independent Geotechnical and Tunnel Expert and (iii) his co-operation with Deutsche Bahn International for the mega Project of Doha Metro for the period 2012 – 2015. For the period August 2018 – February 2020, Michalis worked with Arcadis Singapore, in the position of Senior Technical / Project Director. He led the Detailed Design of the T0- 7 Contract of the DTTS Phase 2 Project for Zublin. The Project included 12km of double-lining sewerage tunnels and 14 shafts of a maximum depth of 60m. Since March 2020, Michalis is cooperating with Arcadis Australia Design and Engineering team, by offering his consulting services in major infrastructure projects (Cross Island Line / Tender Designs of Singapore Metro extensions, Tender Design of Inland Rail Project (2km of NATM railway tunnels / Australia). In July 2021, Michalis started offering his consulting services to AVAX S.A (main Contractor of Line 4A of the Athens Metro Project) for all the detailed designs of the Project’s Civil Works (e.g. temporary and permanent works of Shafts and Stations, as well as for the TBM segmental lining).

let popupposts = ['12175'];

Tarcisio Celestino

Tarcisio Celestino was previously ITA President (2016-19) and President of the Brazilian Tunnelling Committee. He was the Animateur of the ITA Working Group 12 on Sprayed Concrete Use (2005-10). He earned his doctorate degree in Civil Engineering (Rock Mechanics) from the University of California, Berkeley (1981).

He is currently Professor at the University of Sao Paulo and employed by Themag Engenharia Ltda., Sao Paulo (Brazil), where he leads the Geotechnical Engineering, Engineering Geology &Transportation Engineering Design Groups. He is also responsible for the geotechnical designs of several hydroelectric power plants, subways, highways etc., including major underground works (since 1990). He has also acted as consultant.

Professor Celestino continues to contribute his knowledge for the graduate courses & research areas on Rock Mechanics & Underground Works, at the São Carlos Engineering School, University of São Paulo and for the ITACET Foundation.

2. Excursion of history and adventure in Lavreotiki
Sunday 14 May, 2023

Our destination is the exploitation galleys of one of the largest underground mines of Attica. The chambers of metal extraction, rich in recognisable minerals, combine the mystery of ancient drifts with the beauty of caves. We will wander underground for up to 3 hours and explore the maize of drifts, the chambers supported by natural as well as carved-out pillars and the stalactites decoration reminiscent of natural caves. Each of the routes we follow hides surprises waiting to be discovered! 

After we will visit the great “Chaos” sinkhole, a heart-shaped sinkhole formation 150m in diameter and 55m deep. This chiasm may have been formed by the collapse of a cave roof as many of the area’s mining tunnels end there.

Scientific theme: Underground mining activity in Lavrio

Duration: 6 hours inclusive

Detailed program

9.30-10.30 Athens-Lavrio

10.30-13.30 Underground mines

14.00-14.30 Stop at dolin “Chaos” and return to Athens

14.30 – 15.30 Lavrio-Athens

Cost per person: 40,00 €

*limited participation on a first come first served basis. In case participants are less than 20, the respective event will be cancelled and a refund wil be given.

Photo Gallery

1. We go down Athens underground. (Athens centre, moving around on foot)
Saturday 13 May, 2023

How many surprises can the Athens underground have in store for its visitors? The stroll will start from underground shelters and detention areas of the German Kommandatur, remnants of the 2nd World War in Athens. Then, we will take the steps that start off under a timeworn trap door on the side of a road or hidden away in a sidewalk flower–bed, that will lead us in a different, forgotten underground area of the city! For hundreds of years, underground pathways have been used for various and mysterious purposes. Some say that all underground pathways are interconnected although there is no proof of this. Nevertheless, the allure of an unknown world is always there, beneath the ground we walk on. We lift up the antiquated hatch and descend the stone steps.  In the catacomb, we come across tunnels of ancient aqueducts, roman baths and byzantine crypts. The Athens river is also found hidden below the ground, running in old galleys under the most central streets of Athens – we can hear the cars passing over our heads! 

We invite you to discover together the hidden secrets of our city!

Scientific theme: underground constructions of the 19th and 20th century.

Duration: Maximum of 4 hours.

Detailed program:

11.00 Meeting outside Metro Station Panepistimio

11.30 Memorial Site (Korai Street). Two-level underground shelter below the Mansion of Ethniki Insurance Company.

13.00 Catacombs of the Russian Church (Filellinon Street). Inside the catacombs a tunnel and a shaft from ancient Peisistratus aqueduct, ruins from roman baths and crypts of the Byzantine order of Likodimos -11th century.

14.00 Ilissos River (area of Panathenaic Stadium). The buried riverbed of Athens river Ilissos.

Cost per person : 35,00 €

*limited participation on a first come first served basis. In case participants are less than 20, the respective event will be cancelled and a refund wil be given.

Photo Gallery

Professor Kyriazis Pitilakis

Professor Kyriazis Pitilakis has more than forty years of intensive academic, research and professional experience in civil, earthquake and geotechnical engineering. Vice-President of the European Association of Earthquake Engineering (EAEE), ex- Chairman of the Technical Committee “Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering andAssociated Problems” (TC203) of the International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE), and past President of the Greek Society of Earthquake Engineering. He is presently Professor Emeritus in Aristotle University, Thessaloniki, Greece and since 2019 visiting Professor in Tongji University, International Laboratory of earthquake Engineering (ILEE), Shanghai, China.

Coordinator and scientific responsible of numerous European research projects, namely EUROSEISTEST and SYNER-G, he has a long experience in European research activities in earthquake engineering, geotechnical engineering, vulnerability and risk assessment of civil engineering structures, infrastructures and lifelines. According to the recent Stanford classification he is among the top 10 leading researchers in Civil Engineering in Greece, and among the top 10 leading international researchers in specific topics like Soil Dynamics, Engineering Seismology and Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering.

Chairman of several international conferences including the 16th European Conference of Earthquake Engineering, Thessaloniki 2018 and invited keynote lecturer in many International Conferences. Author of more than 650 scientific papers (h-factor 57) published in peer review scientific journals, and conference proceedings, author and co-author in several books, editor of four books published in Springer Editions, all in relevant subjects of earthquake engineering, seismic risk and geotechnical earthquake engineering. Professor Kyriazis Pitilakis is founder and coordinator of EUROSEISTEST, a large scale experimental facility in earthquake engineering, soil dynamics and engineering seismology that is unique in Europe and worldwide. He supervised more that 30 PhD thesis and numerous of his students hold academic positions in Greece and worldwide.

Professor Kyriazis Pitilakis is strongly involved in the ongoing revision of EC8 (Part 1-Seismic Actions and Part 5-Seismic design of foundations, retaining structures, soilstructure interaction, liquefaction, slope stability and underground structures), while he has been international expert for the revision of other seismic codes worldwide.

He is member of the editorial advisory board in Springer editions (Geotechnical, Geological and Earthquake Engineering), member of the editorial board and reviewer of numerous scientific journals and member of many international societies in earthquake and geotechnical engineering.

Honors: Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Palmes Academiques, French Republic.
Thessaloniki 06.06.2022

Professor Marc Panet

The 12th Muir Wood lecture will be delivered by Professor Marc Panet during the WTC2023 in Athens. His nomination being a Muir Wood lecturer was proposed by the French Tunnelling & Underground Space Association (AFTES) as per ITA’s Statues and By-laws.

Marc Panet graduated in Civil Engineering at the École des Mines de Paris and obtained a Master degree at the University of California at Berkeley. He started his career in 1965 at the Laboratoire Central des Ponts et Chaussées, in Paris, where he was a Research Engineer, Head of the Geotechnical Department and Technical Director. In 1982 he joined the SHP Group, in Paris, as Scientific Director. From 1984 to 1996 he was the President and CEO of SIMECSOL; and from 1996 to 2000 President and CEO of FC International SA. Since then he has been working as a consultant. He taught at the École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées, at the École des Mines and at the École Centrale des Arts et Manufactures, in Paris.

Marc has been in charge of numerous studies in geotechnical engineering for underground works, highways, bridges, and natural hazards. Among the main projects are: the Mont Blanc Tunnel (11.6km), the Frejus Road Tunnel (12.9 km), the Large Electron–Positron Collider (CERN in Geneva), the Channel Tunnel (from 1967 to the end of the construction), the Millau Bridge, the Loetschberg Base Tunnel (43 km), subways in Paris, Rennes, Caracas, Athens and Algiers, the slides of the city of Constantine (Algeria), the project of the suspended bridge on the Straits of Messina (Italy) and the project of the cable-stayed bridge on the Golden Horn (Turkey). He is presently involved in a large number of geotechnical projects.

He is the author of a large number of publications in professional journals and international conferences and of the well-known book “Calculation of tunnels using the convergence-confinement method”.

Marc Panet is a Honorary Member of the French Academy of Technology, Knight of the National Order of Merit and Knight of the Order of Academic Palms.